William Kunstler documentary E-mail
Written by Chalupa   
Saturday, 20 June 2009 22:25

A couple weeks ago a documentary about William Kunstler's (one of the lawyers The Dude demanded while sitting in the Malibu police station) life had its Canadian premiere in Calgary.  The film was created by Kunstler's children, Emily and Sarah Kunstler.  They documented their father's life as a civil rights lawyer in the 1960s through his death in 1995.

This is one thing I just love about the Coen Brothers.  Many times when you hear seemingly random names in a film they don't mean anything.  This isn't so with Joel and Ethan Coen.  I've discovered who most of these people are in The Big Lebowski, and I was also pleasantly surprised to look up many of the names mentioned in Barton Fink when I was doing research for my guest appearance on the British movie podcast, Chin Stroker vs. Punter.  Besides just being an actual lawyer, Bill Kunstler was one of the most famous civil rights lawyers in the 1960s, the era The Dude seems to feel most in "his element."

It’s a fascinating film. The story of Kunstler’s career as a civil rights lawyer began with his work for the ACLU in defence of the Freedom Riders, 1960s civil rights activists who challenged Southern segregation laws in the US.  He went on to work with the anti-war movement, native activists including libertarian Russell Means during the Wounded Knee incident, and prisoners advocating, and sometimes rioting, for better incarceration conditions.

This sounds like a really interesting film and I'm going to have to see if i can add it to my Netflix queue.  Oh, and that other lawyer, Ron Kuby?  Yeah, he's a real person too.  In fact, Kunstler employed him from 1983 until 1995 as a junior partner.

William Kunstler: Disturbing the Universe - http://weste rnstandard.blogs.com/shotgun/2009/06/william-kunstler-disturbing-the-universe.html

Wikipedia: William Kunstler - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Kunstler

IMDB - William Kunstler: Disturbing the Universe - http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1074194/

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